By Brendan Shea
Creepiest Business Card Ever
This card, advertising the engraving and printing services of one A.G. Gedney of Washington, D.C., contains about twenty hairs from the head of President Abraham Lincoln and that’s not actually the creepiest part:
Hair side reads:Cut from the head of Abraham Lincoln by Dr. Brown the Embalmer and given by him to Mr. Gedney of Washington; Cut from the vicinity of the wound.
Ew. Non-hair side reads:A.G. Gedney, Copper, Steel & Lithographic Engraving & Printing. Washington. 466 Penna. Avenue.
So, questions: why was Dr. Brown the Embalmer handing out locks of Lincoln’s hair? Did Gedney buy it? Was hair “cut from the vicinity of the wound” more expensive that non-wound-related hair? Did Gedney think Presidential Hair Business Cards (did he have more than one?) would get him more engraving business?
These are questions which demand answers!
Henry E. Huntington Library and Art Gallery. Rare Books Dept. Prints and Ephemera. Judd Stewart collection